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Pushy Ghosts, Wailing Babies, Haunted Bridges: Eerie Urban Legends Of Florida And Alabama
Alabama and Florida urban legends are criminally creepy.
Florida is famous for sunshine, but it also has a dark and deadly side. The same is true about Alabama, its neighbor to the north.
“Floribama Murders,” premiering Saturday, January 7 at 9/8c on Oxygen, explores shocking homicides and bizarre crimes that have left indelible marks on both states. Before the series launches with new episodes, dive into urban legends rooted in Florida and Alabama. Here are five of the creepiest folklore tales.
Hell’s Gate Bridge
Alabama is said to have a number of haunted bridges. This particular Oxford span reportedly earned its eerie reputation in the 1950s, when a young couple in a car plunged off the bridge and drowned in Choccolocco Creek below, according to a Business Insider report.
As the legend goes, if you drive halfway across the bridge at night and turn off your lights, the doomed couple materializes. It gets even creepier. After that a wet mark appears in your car. Another story claims that if you look over your shoulder while driving across the bridge, you’ll see the blazing fires of hell.
There have been plans for several years to demolish the bridge, according to the Anniston Star. It has also been closed to car and foot traffic, Audrey Maxwell, tourism director for Calhoun County area Chamber and Visitors Center, told Oxygen.
Sally Carter’s Restless Spirit
In 1823, a 15-year-old girl named Sally Carter visited her sister at the Cedarhurst Mansion in Huntsville, Alabama. Tragically, during her stay, she died.
The story goes that Carter appeared to a young man in a dream nearly a century later. She told him to fix her headstone that had toppled, which, upon inspection, had indeed collapsed in a storm, per “The Haunting of Alabama.”
Legends grew from there, according to whnt.com. One story is about a woman who fell down a staircase while at the Cedarhurst manse. She said “it felt like someone pushed her from behind.” Was it Sally?
Bloody Bucket Bridge
Florida has its share of urban myths tied to bridges. An unsettling tale concerns a span in Wauchula, southeast of Tampa.
Legend has it that a Civil War-era woman went from midwife to baby murderer following the death of her own infant. According to stories, she told parents their babies were born stillborn and dumped the remains in a river near the bridge.
Haunting of Sunland Hospital
In the 1960s and 1970s, the Sunland Hospital in Orlando served special needs children, according to WFTV. But the facility closed in the 1980s following claims of abuse, neglect, and code violations.
Despite the closure and eventual razing of nearly all of the buildings, legend has it that “ghostly patients still hang around,” reported WFTV.
“The spot where the hospital once stood is now home to a playground rumored to be haunted by the spirits of the children who were once housed in the institution,” according to Orlando Weekly.
Cry Baby Hollow Bridge
The death of an infant sparked this Hartselle, Alabama urban legend. Reports vary on how the baby died, and range from a wagon accident to a flood to murder, according to the whnt.com report.
People have claimed cars “rattle and shake” while motorists drive over the bridge and that the baby’s cries can be heard to this day. “Crossing the bridge at night would be scary enough even without the ghost stories…,” according to “The Haunting of Alabama.”
To learn more about disturbing — and unfortunately real — happenings in this part of the country, watch “Floribama Murders,” airing Saturday, January 7 at 9/8c on Oxygen.